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My coworker makes me laugh.  At least she’s concerned for the rest of us!

(Possible but unconfirmed head cold).  Cracks me up!




ATTAAaaaaCK!  Well, that’s what we got to play with Keirsten when she came to visit this week!  It was fun having an impromptu game night.  Thanks, Tracy for cooking dinner!  I’ve been enjoying family time recently.  I couldn’t believe how grown up my niece has gotten.  We had a good time doing gymnastics in the grass.  She was showing off her handstands and running cartwheels.  Can’t wait for you to come back this summer, K!  Love you!

The Fam.


Rob showing off his shuffling skills.  I think my favorite part is his tongue sticking out in concentration! 


Keirsten being…Keirsten.  Oh, and the one of Brian makes me laugh.  He had no idea I was taking the picture.  Hence the shot of my underarm in the upper left :), hehe!  He was having a goooood time…no really, he was.  We were just pooped from not a lot of sleep the night before!  Click the picture to enlarge, you have to see his mouth; cracks me up every time.


Thankful we got to spend some QT with Keirsten on her quick visit!

Busy Weekend


For not having a lot of plans, this weekend turned out to be busy.

Friday I got a haircut.  It was just a trim, but I think I’ve determined that come July I’m chopping it all off.  As of right now, I’ve decided that I’m ready to bite the bullet and go for the pixie cut!  I would like to be able to donate my hair to locks of love, so I still have a couple more inches to go in order to do that. 

After my haircut B and I met up with some friends to go mountain biking.  It was a fun time other than the rain that decided to dump on us.  It made the day chilly so we were more than ready to head home to warm showers.  We then enjoyed a nice, late lunch at La Farm bakery in Cary.  Mmm, it’s yummy!  We went to the Good Friday service at our church that evening.

Saturday I went to a baby shower for a couple of hours after having a nice breakfast at Panera with Brian.  We also hit up Old Navy where I got a fun new swim suit I can’t wait to hit the beach in!  It looks similar to this one, but striped.


When I got home after the shower I was greeted at the front door with the soccer-ball Easter basket I got for Brian the first year we were married.  You may remember the egg hunt I sent him on around our apartment! (well, you may not, b/c I just spent 5 minutes looking through old blog posts and can’t find the one where I shared how I made him search all over our apartment for Easter eggs…bummer…I wonder where that post went?)  Well, he returned the favor and hid eggs around the 1st floor of our house that I had to find.  Instead of a lot of candy filling the eggs he filled them with nice notes, like “Hot Mountain Biking Wife” and “I love my wife” and “I love DB”, etc.  It was cute and pretty fun :).  Thanks for being sweet, B!  Some pics of me searching.  Glad that soccer ball basket is getting some good use!  Ha.


We headed to the movies that evening to see the Lincoln Lawyer.  We had both finished reading the book by Michael Connelly.  It was a good movie but we both wondered if we would have followed it very well if we hadn’t read the book first.  I didn’t much care, I got to stare at Matthew McConaughey for 2 hours, hehe!  If anything, read the book, it’s a good one. 


So, several interesting things happened today, Sunday.  The whole reason I started this blog post was so I could remember the events of today.  Brian and I got spiffied up to head to church to celebrate the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus!  It was great to get to celebrate with our brothers and sisters in Christ.


We headed to lunch at the Lowther’s and enjoyed some good family time along with 4 dogs!  After that Brian and I headed out to the 286 for some more mtn biking.  Several interesting/funny things happened while we were out there.

1st—As we’re going along I hear this pop pop popping noise and look behind me in time to see this tree falling over toward the trail.  All I  can think is, OMG that’s going to land on Brian!  Luckily he passed it before it came crashing down and it wasn’t on the trail like I had originally thought…my angle was weird.  We just stopped and had to laugh because of the random timing!  I’ve never seen a tree just decide it wanted to topple over out of the blue!  I guess he’d had enough standing around being a tree or something.  Crazy!

2nd—At one point I was jumping over a log and as I went over my front tire hit the ground as my back tire got popped in the air.  So for like 2 seconds (it felt like an eternity) I was suspended in a sort of “donkey kick” position on my bike.  In those couple of seconds I’m holding my breath thinking, please don’t go over your handlebars, please don’t fall, please just land and be ok.  And Brian was holding his breath thinking…well I’m not sure what he was thinking other than OHHHHHH!!!!  Thankfully, my back tire decided to descend back to the ground and not send me flipping forward.  I landed and immediately started laughing in disbelief and asked if Brian had seen me do that!  He started laughing and I had to pull off the trail to catch my breath I was laughing so hard.  I wish we had caught it on camera b/c I’m sure it was….awesome!

3rd—There is this reallllllllly fun steeeeeeeep hill toward the end of the trail (or the beginning, depending on which way you start) that I liken to the first drop of a rollercoaster!  It is that steep!  You basically have to plunge down it with no brakes and hope for the best as you come down to the bottom.  But it is SO fun!!!  I think I’ve learned that I’m very much a thrill seeker.  I LOVE the rush of adrenaline you get after doing something that could easily get you hurt or worse.  As you come through the bottom the trail turns and you go over a bridge and then go over another banked bridge.  We took the plunge twice and on the 2nd trip down I went first.  As I was finishing up my turn I looked back b/c I heard a crash and sure enough I see bike tires in the air and no Brian.  I hopped off my bike and ran back to where he was and he assured me he was ok, but man, did my adrenaline get going thinking he might have hurt himself.  He rarely falls but on the banked bridge his back tired decided to slip off and down he went.  I think I got more hurt than he did b/c as I was running back to him I broke through 2 slats on another bridge I had to cross and went down pretty hard. 

So that was that on the bike trip.  But then later tonight we were leaving the Lowther’s house (after having picked up some left-overs, yum) and Brian spots a snake crossing the road.  He puts the car in reverse and back we went to check it out.  He thinks it’s a copperhead so he called his dad.  His dad comes running down to meet us and sure enough, it IS a copperhead.  YUCK.  I hate snakes.  Well, Brian’s dad starts poking it with a stick and it starts thrashing and jumping about.  I’m creeped out at this point and start heading back to the car, but it’s dark and I don’t know if there are more snakes so I go back to Brian and his dad with the flashlights.  We finally get back in the car and I almost jump through the roof when my bag of leftovers bumps into my foot!  Ugh, I hate snakes!  Hate them.

So yeah, if you’re still reading…that was my busy weekend.  Overall, it was a good one!

Meet Mary Wallace


Yesterday, Brian and I got to go visit some sweet friends and meet the newest member of their family.  This is Mary Wallace and she is one of the prettiest babies I’ve seen!  She was so content the whole time we visited and even opened her eyes for us some.




Annnd, here we are, holding Mdubs.  She was is precious!


Hi, my name is Elsie


My new bike arrived today.  Brian rushed home to put it together for me.  I was glad he did!


I don’t know, I think pink might be my color.


I don’t think Elsie and I got off to a good start today, though.  She sort of took a crack at me.  I’d say she won the first round.2011-04-15_17-54-20_585  Oh, but don’t worry.  I’ll have her under control in no time.  I hope.

I do believe this shorts, dresses and skirts season is not going to be my most flattering :(.  That makes me sad, but then, I like adventure so I guess it’s the price I pay.

Banged Up


And I wonder why my legs look like they do after mountain biking!  This is kind of long but I laughed almost all the way through it.  Oh, and what’s with the spectators?!  1) No way would I sit/stand/lay that close to where people are flying off their bikes, and 2) why don’t they get out of the way of oncoming, out of control racers?!  HA!

BUCS 2011 X.C Carnage! from Joe Bowman on Vimeo.

In case you were wondering, no, I don’t attempt things like this. Yet.

It is amazing how resilient the human body is.  I shake my head in amazement after watching something like this.

Are you Rugged?


Today, I ran a race unlike any race I’ve ever run.  It’s called a Rugged Maniac 5k.  You can check it out here.  It is most definitely not your typical 5k race.  There is mud up to your ankles, barbed wire forcing you to crawl in the mud, walls to scale, tunnels to crawl through, swinging tires to duck and weave, tangled pipe webs to maneuver through,  rope ladders to climb, fire pits to leap and oh yeah, 3.2 mils to run.  Insane?  You betcha.

Back in February a friend of mine mentioned wanting to run this race.  I thought it sounded crazy but exciting.  So, using my powers of persuasion I convinced Brian, his sister and her fiancé, and my coworker to join me in putting our ruggedness to the test. 

The alarm sounded at 6am.  Our heat started at 10am but there was an hour and a half drive to the race destination.   After snoozing for a bit we finally drug ourselves out of bed to get dressed and eat a good breakfast before the race.  We purposely donned crappier running attire knowing our clothes may wind up ruined.  And having viewed pictures of other races and what you look like after you finish, changes of clothes and towels were also packed.

Here we are on our way. 


We arrived at the parking “lot”, which was really just a big cow pasture, and I could smell all the onion grass in the field.  In fact, the onion smell was so powerful I immediately started gagging when I got out of the car.  But anyway, the rain the day before had turned the field into a tricky parking area with lots of muddy ruts.  We were beginning to have serious reservations about getting the car out of the lot later!  Walking over to the loading area (you had to ride a shuttle from the parking area to the race start) I found myself complaining about having to walk through the mud.  My complaining was a bit ironic seeing as I had willingly signed up for a race knowing several obstacles involved crawling through mud.

Anyway, we quickly found the 5th person of our team and posed for a picture before catching the bus to the start.


Registration went smoothly and we were soon ready to be corralled at the start line.  Taking off our extra layers was tough.  It was a bit chilly!  But nonetheless we were excited to get racing!  There were some pretty hardcore looking folks at the start line…and I’m sure we looked just as menacing…ok, not really.  I was shivering my tail off jumping around like an idiot trying to stay warm. 

Suddenly, it was time to start.  10, 9, 8….4, 3, 2, 1 GO!!!!  And off we went.  The first test was running over several motocross moguls.  Easier said than done…the track was covered in about 5 inches or more of thick, gooey mud.  I almost lost a shoe in the first 2 minutes of the race and wondered if I would even have shoes by the end! 

Within the first 2/10ths of a mile we were crawling on hands and knees under strings of barbed wire.  Oh, but we were crawling through a giant mud puddle.  Thankfully, the barbed wire was high enough above me that I didn’t have to put my knees down and avoided soaking my shirt and shorts.  BUT my arms got soaked and the cold water and air combined to make them feel like lead weights.

As we got through that obstacle and rounded a turn, my wet, muddy feet kind of went out of control.  I had no traction and my feet started slipping every which way.  I felt like one of those cartoon characters whose feet are moving faster than their bodies.  Except instead of having them propel me forward my feet just shot me, literally, off course and I fell. I got a good laugh out of it as I mentally pictured what I must have looked like!  My only battle wound of the day came from that!  I’m thankful it wasn’t worse considering all the crazy bruises I’ve accumulated recently from mountain biking.


After surviving the switchbacks of the motocross track it was off to the woods.  At this point my body felt like giving up and we were maybe 1/2 a mile into the race.  I was beginning to wonder what in the world I had gotten myself into.  There were several walls we had to jump over or crawl under in the woods.  They were only about 5’ high so no boosting was needed.  Then we came upon this thing that Brian thought at first looked like some kid had built a fort in the woods.  Nope, it was a tunnel you had to crawl through.

This is getting long so I’m going to just do highlights now:

We had to climb a 20’ or so tall rope net thing and at the top you had to jump down onto this mat.  It was fun, but it was definitely the first obstacle where you felt like you could get seriously hurt!  We jumped over 2 fire pits, which weren’t that scary, but there was a lot of smoke…and the warmth was nice on such a chilly day!  We then had to scale these pretty tall walls.   They were probably about 7’ or 8’ high.  There was a ledge at about 3.5’ that if you could get to you could use to jump over the top of the wall.  Brian was able to boost me high enough so I could grab the top of the wall, get up to the ledge and clamber over the top.  It was a little nerve-wracking because so many muddy people had already gone over that the tops (being only 2” wide) were super slippery.  I was sure my hands were going to slip sending me spilling over uncontrollably.  But I didn’t….shew!  You jumped down to an air pad and then raced to the next wall.  There were 2 of these.

The final obstacle was this big water slide.  At the top the crew told us “go down any way you want, just don’t hold onto the sides.”  Well, there wasn’t any way I was going down other than feet first…there was no telling was lay in the bottom of that mud puddle!  And oh, down I went.  I hit the water and went completely under!  Once in the puddle, you had to go under or over these long buoys (there were 5 or 6).  I never realized how little lung capacity I had.  I could go under one then couldn’t catch my breath so I had to wait and then slowly go under the others.  I tried going over one but when I slid off the other side I tweaked my back so I thought going under was safer.  The scary part was that while I was going under, other racers were going over pushing the buoy down.  I kept thinking, what if this thing traps me underneath?!  A bit irrational, yes, but hey, I was exhausted at this point.  This is where Brian got his battle wound.  His leg caught the top of the slide and he got a good cut.


Made it through the pit, up the incredibly slimy hill and across the finish line!  Not sure of our exact time but I’m thinking it was around the 30-35 minute mark.  Pretty happy with that! 

Wish we could have taken pictures during the race.  But if I had taken my camera it would have been any combination of the following: smashed, drowned, caked in mud, lost.

Here’s our rag-tag bunch after finishing!  Right after, still soaking.  Enjoying some post race refreshments and waiting for the bus to take us back to the car.



Oh, and we were able to get the car out of the mud pit without getting stuck.  Good driving, Brian!  We also stopped at Johnson’s in Siler City on the way home.  Best burgers around!  Mmmm, yummy!

What a fun race.  I think we can confidently say:  Yes,we’re rugged!